Who Are the Gitmo Defendants?

Today, the U.S. dropped charges against the so-called ’20th hijacker’.

That got me wondering, who are the remaining Guantanamo defendants?

It turns out that they are not “Al Qaeda terrorists”, but a bunch of kids, a car pool driver, and others who may have been involved in a civil war within their own country, but not a war against the United States.

For example, an article written by former Wall Street Journal editor and influential conservative Paul Craig Roberts includes the following bombshell:

The six that the United States are bringing to “trial” include two child soldiers for the Taliban and a car pool driver who allegedly drove Osama bin Laden.

The Taliban did not attack the United States. The child soldiers were fighting in an Afghan civil war. The United States attacked the Taliban. How does that make Taliban soldiers terrorists who should be locked up and abused in Gitmo and brought before a kangaroo military tribunal? If a terrorist hires a driver or a taxi, does that make the driver a terrorist? What about the pilots of the airliners who brought the alleged 9-11 terrorists to the United States? Are they guilty, too?

Given that the military may not have any real terrorists in custody, it becomes a little clearer why the trials have been rigged to prevent the possibility of acquittal. As Mr. Roberts puts it:

The Gitmo trials are show trials. Their only purpose is to create the precedent that the executive branch can ignore the U.S. court system and try people in the same manner that innocent people were tried in Stalinist Russia and Gestapo Germany. If the Bush regime had any real evidence against the Gitmo detainees, it would have no need for its kangaroo military tribunal.

If any more proof is needed that Bush has no case against any of the Gitmo detainees, the following AP News report of Feb. 14, 2008, should suffice: “The Bush administration asked the Supreme Court on Thursday to limit judges’ authority to scrutinize evidence against detainees at Guantanamo Bay.”

The reason Bush doesn’t want judges to see the evidence is that there is no evidence except a few confessions obtained by torture. In the American system of justice, confession obtained by torture is self-incrimination and is impermissible evidence under the U.S. Constitution.

***

the “dangerous terrorists” claim of the Bush administration is just another hoax perpetrated on the inattentive American public.

One of the Gitmo defendants is allegedly Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, who is supposed to be a mastermind of the 9/11 attacks. However, given that Mohammed was killed years ago, it is not clear who the U.S. military is really holding.

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